Review: The many roads to (and from) multicellularity (J. Exp. Bot)

Multicellularity is without doubt a fantastic fluke. We know that it arose independently in plants and animals, but how many times? And is there a common “predisposition” to multicellularity in the universal common ancestor? These are the questions addressed in this review by Niklas and Newman. Looking across the green lineage, the authors explore the contributions of cell-cell adhesion, metabolic specialization, and ponder the importance of adaptive advantage for the earliest forms of multicellularity. (Summary by Mary Williams) J. Exp. Bot. 10.1093/jxb/erz547